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a showstopping splashback

From Habitat magazine - issue 32, kitchens

Elissa’s commitment to quality results in an exceptional splashback.

Painting the splashback

Elissa Eastwood is a certified Resene Eco. Decorator focused on minimising waste from painting. From set up to clean-up, she's focused on thinking smarter about her methods. Rather than going for what's easiest, she's committed to doing what's best for the environment and what's going to deliver the highest quality result for her client – a mandate that could not come across more clearly in this project: a jaw-dropping hand-painted splashback.

"The splashback was designed to be part of the kitchen in a very inclusive and exacting way by referencing the different colours and levels of luminosity used elsewhere in the kitchen area. It needed to attract attention and possess energy while working in harmony with the rest of the open plan area," says Elissa.

Elissa decided to go for a tile look, but given that she wanted total control of where, what and how the colour would be used, she decided to stencil the pattern directly onto the wall and add in hand-painted details.

Finished splashback handpainted
Elissa's stunning stencilled and hand-painted 'tile' splashback is the star of this kitchen. She started with a background in Resene Masala. She then applied the stencilled pattern with a custom blend of Resene Masala and Resene Merino to lighten it followed by details in Resene Masala custom blended with Resene Black and highlights in sparkly Resene Gold Dust metallic paint. The adjacent walls are in Resene Merino and the upper cabinets are in Resene Masala.

"This approach meant that I was able to do a reasonable amount of detail, which gave the pattern interest and was similar to the style of pattern I had used though the rest of the house."

Elissa started with a background in Resene Lumbersider tinted to Resene Masala. For the stencil itself, she blended Resene Zylone Sheen Zero tinted to Resene Masala with a small amount of Resene Merino to lighten it. For the details, she used another custom blend – Resene Lumbersider tinted to Resene Masala with extra black added. She finished it with Resene Gold Dust metallic paint to add a bit of luxe to the look.

Kitchen splashback work in progress

According to Elissa, time was the biggest challenge. Not having attempted a project with quite this level of detail before, she wasn't able to anticipate the effort it took to complete. Much of the work was done in the evenings, lit by plug-in lamps, but she managed to get the job finished before the kitchen installation. In total, the project took 27 hours to complete with 23 of those hours spent on the detailing using her near-black Resene Masala blend and Resene Gold Dust metallic paint.

"I wanted it to have a more hand painted and intricate look than simply blocking in the colour with a small roller, so I used a super fine artist brush and painted the detail, leaving a border around the edge of the stencil graphic," she explains. "This approach added depth, intrigue and I believe a higher-end finish."

Since splashbacks are susceptible to coming into contact with moisture and grease, Elissa also needed to be mindful of the purpose of the area and how to ensure its durability. She protected her finished work using Resene Uracryl Clear to reduce the risk of scuffs, scratches and moisture damage.

Her hard work has made for an eye-catching one-of-a-kind feature – one that you would have to look at twice to know that it isn't tiled, which also matches flawlessly with the rest of the kitchen and the broader scheme colour throughout the home.

design and images: Elissa Eastwood Eastwood Environmental Painting


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